Q. How did I get a malware infection?
The majority of malware infections are caused through the sending of seamingly innocent emails. That is, someone will forward you an attachment in an email (they look like a zip file, picture, sound file or even just a Word document but in fact are executable programs). When you click on the attachment to open it the virus places files on your hard disk and can modify Windows system files and registry. Once it has done this, the next time you restart the computer, the virus takes over. Virus can also be transmitted on memory sticks, cloud storage platforms (like Dropbox, OneDrive or Google Drive) and even computer networks as well as even just by visiting certain sites on the Internet. Some forms of virus attack your email system and send infected emails to every email address in your address book, inbox and sent mail. So not only are you infected but you infect all of your friends and colleagues.
Q. Will my repair cause data loss on my device?
NETECH will always take the necessary precautions to ensure that your data is secure when undergoing repair at our workshop - including backups before any work commencement. Whilst data loss almost never happens, no IT business can ever guarantee that you will not experience data loss when being repaired for malware. This is because malware usually attaches itself to existing data, and is subsequently removed to keep everything else uninfected. Again, the best way to avoid data loss is to use your common sense to avoid being infected in the first place.
Q. How do I protect myself?
Firstly, if you use the Internet, you MUST use a virus scanner. We recommend AVG Anti-Virus as it provides great system and email protection as well as regularly maintained update service. You have to regularly download the updates to protect yourself from being infected with virus. There are thousands of new virus variants released each month with the majority of infections spread through email. The best defence against malware is common sense - ask yourself:
- 1. Am I expecting an email from this person?
- 2. Is an attachment a reasonable expectation?
- 3. Does this business even operate from Australia?
- 4. Is it usual for this business/individual to send emails? (e.g. government departments, police, courts or law firms WILL NEVER send emails without your knowledge and consent.
Q. What is malware/virus?
Malware (or viruses) are programs that run in the background of your computer. Its like the human kind of virus it attaches itself to the host and progressively causes it to become sicker and sicker. Infections can be either major or minor. Some benign viruses simply pop up a message every now and then on your screen while others destroy or encrypt your hard drive contents. It is important that if your computer starts acting abnormally slow to shut your computer down and contact NETECH as soon as possible to secure your business data.
Q. What happens if I get infected?
While most virus scanners can rid infected files of common virus the more rampant types modify the Windows system registry in a way that normally requires intervention to get rid of them. In some cases the scanner cannot even delete the virus because it remains in use on the system and cannot be deleted. Most users would find it difficult (if not dangerous to system stability) to play with the registry or booting the system in safe mode. In these examples NETECH IT technicians will professionally remove malware from your system, at our workshop, using industry best practice. Emergency support is also available upon request.